As the benefits of consistent, good sleep become more well-known, many people are looking for ways to improve their sleep. If you aren’t sleeping well, you may wonder if your diet or eating habits are affecting your ability to get a good night of rest. Let’s take a closer look at the ways that your diet will and won’t affect the quality of your sleep.
A HEALTHY, BALANCED DIET CAN HELP IMPROVE SLEEP
Simply put, your diet does affect your sleep. If you are looking for ways to improve your sleep, you need to take a look at what you’re eating. Your diet can also cause insomnia and problems like interrupted sleep (where you’re waking up for a sustained period one or more times during the night). Fortunately, making some changes to what you eat can help to improve your sleep.
A healthy, well-rounded diet should provide you with nutrition from a variety of different sources. Whole foods that are rich in vitamins and minerals give your body the sustenance it needs without disrupting your sleep cycle. A balanced diet that contains a good number of vegetables, fruits, and nuts can make it easier for you to enjoy high-quality sleep. Fried foods or foods that cause indigestion should also be avoided as much as possible. Ultimately, a diet that is heavy in protein and fiber while avoiding processed foods and sugar is best.
IS THERE ANYTHING ELSE YOU CAN DO?
MONITOR YOUR CAFFEINE INTAKE
A limited amount of caffeine consumed before 3 p.m. can help you to remain alert during the day while adding little interference to your sleep cycle. Alternatively, drinking caffeine in the late afternoon or evening will have a detrimental effect on most people’s sleep. A sleep diary that looks at your diet and how it affects your sleep is a useful tool to identify how your food is affecting your rest.
THINK ABOUT WHAT TIME YOU EAT
In addition to what you are eating, when you’re eating, it can affect as well. Eat your evening meal early enough that you give your body at least four hours to digest it before bedtime. Going to sleep on a full stomach is a sure way to lower the quality of your night of sleep.
VISIT A DOCTOR OR HEALTH PROFESSIONAL
Anyone experiencing sleep issues should first take a look at their diet and their eating habits to look for areas that can be improved. Making a few easy changes can significantly increase the quality of your sleep. Of course, always check with your doctor or another health professional before making any significant changes.
Sleep is vital for good overall health and wellness, so it makes sense to do all you can to optimize this part of your life. If you are experiencing sleep disruption that lasts more than a night or two, it’s a good idea to seek medical attention. It is difficult, if not impossible, to achieve and maintain a high level of health and wellness without proper, consistent, restorative sleep.